Common Sense

Times Are Tough — Americans Are Tougher

Well, I hate to say I told you so but... I told you so.

Despite all the hand wringing, crape-hanging, doom-saying predictions that this holiday season would stink, I argued it would not.

Now, I know it's still early, but so far I'm right.

Sales during the post-Turkey Day rush are quite a rush indeed. The market research firm Shoppertrac is reporting sales up nearly 11 percent on Friday and Saturday over the same period a year ago.

And they were strong everywhere. In the South, up 12 percent. In the West, up nearly 12 percent. In the Midwest, 11 percent. And in the so-called really battered Northeast, up 8 percent.

Wal-Mart said its Black Friday sales alone were the strongest ever. Not the strongest in years, but the strongest ever.

My point here is not to brag, but to remind you about you. You're a lot more resilient than experts say you are. And a lot smarter and a whole lot more upbeat.

Sure, some of you are being careful. And more than a few of you are being selective where you shop. Perhaps it's no accident discount stores are doing the best.

But the brainiacs predicting doom and gloom -- the ones who thought you'd be puckered out, tired out, spent out, and just strung out -- well, they can't figure you out.

But I can. You are as upbeat as they are uppity. As brave as they are bombastic. As dynamic as they are dour.

I'm not saying times aren't tough -- just that Americans are tougher. I pity the guys who thought they knew you, that never apparently took the time to simply talk to you.

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